Successful people and business have a clear vision and a road map which guides their actions each and every day.
How many of us get to the end of the day and wonder what we have really achieved? Our day has been busy, but we have spent it responding to outside influences be they emails, phone calls, meetings, or staff issues. We all get caught up in the day to day tasks which fill our day but do not move us towards achieving our vision and goals.
Most of us started a business with a specific vision or a problem we wanted to solve, but as time has gone on, we often lose sight of this and instead spend our time simply responding to outside influences which cause us to work in the business rather than on the business.
Your Business Vision
Having a clear vision which is linked to our desires, and then matching goals to that vision will provide us with a road map that can guide our daily actions and help filter out the noise.
If you do not have a documented vision and business plan to achieve that vision, then I suggest you should take yourself out of your business for a day, leave the phone and laptop behind and head to the beach or the country and spend some quality time thinking about your business. Here are some questions you could ask yourself:
- Why did you get into business?
- What problem did I establish the business to solve?
- What desire does the business fulfill?
- In what way is my product or service different from my competitors?
- What is my competitive advantage?
- If there were no resource constraints, what wold I like my business to look like in 3, 5 and 10 years time?
Goals provide a roadmap
Once you have established your vision, it is time to think about the goals that you need to set to achieve the vision. For goals to be successful they should be set along the SMART goal principle as follows:
Specific - You need to clearly define what you are going to do e.g. I will focus on marketing to generate more leads
Measurable - Goals need to be able to be measured e.g. I will spend one hour a day on marketing and build leads by 50%
Achievable - The goal needs to stretch you but still ne achievable
Realistic - The goal must be possible
Time-Bound - The goal should have a timeframe e.g. I will have an additional 100 contacts by 30 November 2014
You should have both short term and long term goals. The long term goals are linked to your vision and the short term goals are linked to the long term goals.
If your vision is in line with your desires, and your goals are in line with your vision; they are documented and you look at them everyday -- they will focus your mind on the critical tasks and activities that you need to do to achieve your vision.
Your goals will also provide a screen or microscope by which you can make an assessment of how you spend your day and what activities you focus on. It will then be a lot easier to say no to that task or request if it does not move you towards your goals.
Daily action plan
Once you have set your goals, you can then have your daily tasks and to do lists reflect those goals. I also like to run a 90 day plan which focuses my mind on the tasks I need to action to achieve my goals.
Accordingly, the road to success with organising your business and your self is as follows:
1. Have a vision which is documented
2. Have a business plan that documents how you are going to achieve your vision
3. Set SMART goals around the vision and document and monitor daily
4. Have a 90-day plan that focuses you on the tasks you need to do to achieve your goals
5.Have a daily to-do list that is focused on the things you need to do to achieve your 90 day plan.